Gov. Mark Dayton has directed state agencies to hire more employees with disabilities, seeking to reverse an alarming decline in the state’s hiring of disabled people.
The governor this week signed an executive order that directs state agencies to increase employment of people with disabilities to 7 percent by 2018, up from 3.2 percent in 2013.
The directive is a response to concerns that Minnesota has fallen behind much of the nation in the hiring and recruiting of people with physical and developmental disabilities. It also is seen as a way for Dayton to gain support among the nearly one in five Minnesotans who have a disability, defined as a physical or mental condition that limits a person’s ability to perform a major activity.
MCIL offers its strong support for this executive order, and applauds Governor Dayton’s interest and intitiative on behalf of Minnesotans with disabilities.
MCIL has been a leader in its implementation and participation in a unique, national model of IL and VR cooperation, in partnership with MN DEED. Our IL/VR Collaboration enables MCIL to place IL specialists in each of the metro area Workforce Centers. This effort allow MCIL to work side-by-side with VR to provide IL supports concurrent with VR job training efforts. The intent is to provide these parallel services to increase a positive employment outcome. We believe that a positive employment outcome is enhanced by having good IL skills, and a successful IL experience includes meaningful employment.
Since its inception in 2008, the IL/VR collaboration has served between 1,000-1200 people per year, and has a 67% success rate of employment outcomes.
These efforts, among many other initiatives, along with Governor Dayton’s executive order will allow Minnesota to continue to address the significant unemployment of people with disabilities.